One of the sectors expected to take the biggest hit will be the vaporizer producers, according to research published by Marijuana Business Daily.
Others likely to be affected by the Trump administration’s tariffs on China include grow operations needing lighting equipment; brands whose packing is printed in China and companies utilizing Chinese-made steel and aluminum, such as extraction equipment.
In May, Trump announced that by June 15 the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) should announce 25% tariffs on approximately $50 billion worth of Chinese imports containing “industrially significant technologies.”
Then on August 1, the White House said it intended to increase some imposed tariffs from 10% up to 25% on Chinese imports.
Included on this second list of items directly affected by increased tariffs relates to vaping devices, such as batteries and pre-filled pods and cartridges.
According to the import-export data tracking websiteDatamyne, noted MJ Business Daily, the United States imported $42 million worth of vaporizers and vaping parts from China in 2017 along with another $800,000 worth of similar products from Hong Kong.
“If I was in the vape industry or the lighting industry or greenhouse industry, I would be pretty concerned that costs were going to go up as the result of a trade war,” said Kevin Hogan, president and co-founder of Oregrown, a vertically integrated cannabis company in Bend, Oregon.
Hogan said vaping products are among the largest-growing segment in cannabis “by a country mile.” All of Oregrown’s vaporizers are made in China.
On the construction side, Hogan told MJ Business Daily, that he’s also concerned about the potential future cost of steel for greenhouses.
In states such as Oregon, much of the outdoor-grown cannabis flower, which is sold on the low end of the market, is processed into oil and sold for vape cartridges. Hence, the tariffs will directly affect one of the largest segments of the state’s cannabis industry.
While repercussions from the tariffs may not be immediately felt, when they do… it will likely be the consumers who feel it most.